Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled. Matthew 5:6 ESV
What is it to hunger and thirst for righteousness? And how can someone who hungers and thirsts for righteousness be filled?
To hunger and thirst is to have deep needs and deep aches that are completely consuming, taking up all of a person’s thoughts. There is a desire for righteousness that most people can identify with, a desire for injustice to be addressed. This can take many forms — lingering sadness, annoyance, self righteousness, despair, entitlement, and anger. In my mind, these reactions are more superficial than what Jesus is talking about. What Jesus means, I believe, is a desire to see righteousness in the world and within oneself. That’s the point at which the desire for righteousness becomes consuming. That’s the point at which we realize we cannot survive, let alone thrive, without being filled.
How can Jesus offer the hope that we can be filled?
There’s no end to injustice; we see it all around us. Given the way news is presented so negatively in order to get viewers, it’s easy to get overwhelmed and to believe that there is no righteousness on this earth.
I believe our desire for righteousness will never be completely filled this side of eternity, but I also believe we can experience the filling Jesus talks about. I’m a grassroots leader in my town, and for me, getting involved in my community has been one way to be filled.
I love the definition Alex gave of “vision” recently: He said, having vision is “imagining what could be and should be”.
I’ve met with others sharing visions for ways our local government could and should be better; and so, we have worked together toward achieving these common goals. As we go beyond consuming media to get involved addressing issues, we can start to be filled by connecting with others — having the satisfaction of working toward common goals and the peace that comes from inner change.